Rwanda First Lady, Jeannette Kagame has challenged the next generation to sustain national gains and carry forward the achievements of the last two decades.
“We remind them, most solemnly, to wear gratitude as a badge of honor for without it, life is void and meaningless,” she said on Sunday morning at the Young Leaders Prayer Conference (YLPC) in Kigali.
The First Lady told the gathering that, “as we pause to reflect upon our own journey as Rwandans, we are forever grateful – first and foremost – to God, for thus far He has brought us; and we are thankful to the men and women, who God used to liberate our country.”
She also insisted that, “We must not only show gratitude when things go our way; we must also learn to thank God for the challenges we encounter. We learn and grow from them every day.”
In 1994, she said, “the world wrote us Rwandans off as a failed state. At the time, very few believed that one day, let alone 26 years later, Rwanda would become a high-end tourist destination.”
The First Lady said the there must be consistent reminder of where the country was 25 years ago, “and we do not take for granted that it was very possible for us as a people and a nation, to get stuck in a cycle of conflict, poverty, and self-destruction.”
She was attending the second day of the YLPC for the second day. On Saturday, she attended the event alongside Hon. Augustin Iyamuremye, President of the Senate, leaders in government, private and faith based sectors.
This 25th edition of the National Prayer Breakfast, an initiative of Rwanda Leaders Fellowship, provides an opportunity to reflect on the past year and focus on the coming year, while praying for the nation and its leaders.
Under the theme: ‘Building Healthy Families for a Healthy Nation’, the Young Leaders Pray featured a ‘Conversation with the First Lady’ on the first day, moderated by Pastor Didier Habimana.
At the panel, the First Lady said the future of a sane country requires solid and strong families. She said stable and happier families are a collective responsibility of both a man and woman and such a virtue is facilitated by good values.
First Lady Jeannette Kagame: The sheer magic of uttering that simple phrase, ‘thank you’ to a family member, a colleague, a friend, a stranger! It does not cost a cent, but its value is worth millions.
— First Lady of Rwanda (@FirstLadyRwanda) January 12, 2020
Participants at the Prayer Conference on Sunday focused on fighting poverty and hunger.
Similarly, on the global stage, there are daunting challenges. In ‘The state of the world’s children” 2019 report: Growing well in a changing world. Children, food and nutrition” by UNICEF, difficult questions are posed…
How is it that in the 21st century, we still have 149 million children under 5 with stunting and almost 50 million with wasting?
How is it possible that overweight and obesity in children and young people are continuing to rise and are increasingly among the poor?
And why are healthy diets becoming more expensive while unhealthy, non-nutritious diets are becoming cheaper?